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The Importance of Certified Translation Services for Global Companies



The Importance of Certified Translation Services for Global Companies

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Generally speaking, running a business isn’t usually for the faint hearted. With a number of different challenges awaiting around practically every corner, being able to grow an organisation of any kind successfully is an extremely demanding task. Running an international business, well, let’s just say that it’s even more difficult. Dealing with foreign and multilingual customers, business partners and foreign institutions can be a truly challenging process. A successful internationalization generally involves a whole lot of patience, careful planning and a close to perfect business plan, as well as something that’s often overlooked by some business owners, and that’s help from agencies specializing in providing officially certified translation services.

Recently, several new studies suggested, that in order to approach international markets and multilingual consumers successfully, you’ll have to do so directly in their native language. In fact, almost 90% of respondents said to be much more inclined to making a purchase of a product or a service if the detailed information about it is available to them in their language. As a result of these findings, a rapidly growing number of business owners and general campaign managers in the United Kingdom decide to approach officially accredited translation agencies, (also known as LSPs), which are able to provide certified translation services and as a result, allow them to accurately translate their documents and materials into the market’s native language. This, consequently, gives them a truly great competitive advantage and builds a strong and professional brand image, which can be essential when expanding into new, overseas markets, where the potential consumers are not yet aware of your organization and services you offer.

What are the most translated documents?

As a rule of thumb, certified translation services should be incorporated into your company’s budget. As the price of this professional service comes as a surprise to many (we’ll discuss prices in more detail later in the article), it’s always a good idea to determine which particular documents are essential and must be translated, and which are not vital for approaching international markets. Doing this will allow you to bring down the costs and relocate parts of the budget elsewhere.

If, however, you have not worked with a professional translation agency before, it might be somewhat confusing to actually determine precisely, which documents and materials to translate, and which to leave out.

A vast majority of businesses which approach foreign markets decide to translate their digital means and channels, such as website, social-media or some email templates. This allows them to approach potential customers in a very organic way.

In fact, a company’s website is nowadays the primary force behind customer acquisition across multiple different corporate sectors, which proves the value behind accurately translating your company’s digital means.

Additionally, other marketing literature such as brochures is also often translated by businesses when expanding into the overseas markets. This is perhaps especially true, if the corporation chooses to have physical locations within the chosen markets, for example, a high street shop or a locally based office.

How much should a certified translation service cost?

The cost of obtaining an officially certified translation depends on a number of different factors. Of course, the total number or words (or pages) within your documents is the key element. The other aspect which can influence the total price most significantly is the languages required.

Generally speaking, European languages such as German, French, Polish or Spanish tend to be slightly cheaper than some Asian or African languages. In the United Kingdom, the prices for European languages start at around £0.09 – £0.10 per word. For languages which are rarer, for example – Japanese or Korean, you can expect the prices to start at around £0.12 per word.

Additionally, the type of content you need to translate is yet another factor which can directly influence the total price for converting your content into another language. Marketing materials, websites or business content, which is to be presented within the target market directly to the potential customers, usually requires an additional proofreading to ensure that any spelling or grammar mistakes are completely eliminated. Legal documents or materials intended for internal use within your company, for example – memos, are on the opposite side of the scale, and so a simple standard translation is usually perfectly sufficient, as a spelling mistake, for example, won’t negatively affect your company’s image.

Can just about anyone translate and certify my documents?

To give you the shortest possible answer – no. In order to translate and officially certify your documents, you will need to contact an authorized language provider (either an agency or a freelance linguist), which is legally registered and as a result, allowed to provide such service. In the UK alone, there are several official translation bodies, and so when approaching a language provider with your documents, it is absolutely essential to ensure that they are in fact an officially registered member of such organisation as this ensures security, accuracy and a professional customer service throughout the entire translation process.

It is important however to bear in mind, that there are different official bodies for translation companies and freelance linguists.

Translation agencies and larger providers tend to be registered with the ATC (Association of Translation Companies). This is a widely recognized organisation in the United Kingdom, which specializes in providing official translation accreditations to agencies which meet rigorous criteria. As a result, if the agency you wish to work with on translating and certifying your documents is an ATC member, you are most likely in very good hands.

Alternatively, there are several websites which gather expert and in-depth reviews from unbiased, professional sources. For example, Goodfirms or Clutch are some of the sites worth visiting when looking for a professional provider to translate and certify your documents

Working with a freelance linguist is yet another alternative to getting your documents converted into another language. Similarly to professional agencies, freelance translators also have expert governing bodies. In the UK we recognize, for example, the ITI (Institute of Translation and Interpreting) or the CIOL (Chartered Institute of Linguists). When choosing a translator to partner with, visiting these resources can come in extremely handy.

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